For a unique wine experience in Las Vegas dine at Aureole, where you get dinner and a show.
At the heart of the restaurant is a four-story, temperature controlled wine tower. Bottles are retrieved by “flying wine angels,” women clad in black spandex who soar up and down the tower using an elaborate pulley system.
The playbill for this performance is in the form of the eWinebook, an electronic wine list. With a few taps of the pen you can search through the thousands of bottles in Aureole’s wine collection. It’s so much fun to play with you’ll forget that you came to the restaurant to eat.
The eWinebook groups wines by type, country, region, varietal and vintage. It’s great for people who aren’t as knowledgeable about wine; in selecting the characteristics you want, you create your own smaller and more manageable list to choose from. And of course if you’re completely lost a sommelier can assist you. My one complaint is that you can’t search by price, which would be helpful in removing wines that aren’t in your desired price range.
Each bottle on Aureole’s list is assigned a number so the wine angels know exactly where on the tower to find it. The wines are arranged randomly and not by price, so a less expensive bottle may make for a more exciting show.
Though the wine tower can hold up to 10,000 bottles not all of Aureole’s wines are kept there. Older reds are kept in a rare wine cellar and white and sparkling wines are stored in a cold room kept below 40 degrees.
Fortunately, this show of selecting and retrieving the wine isn’t meant to distract you from the food. Aureole’s menu is a mix of progressive American cuisine with the theatricality of Las Vegas. I really enjoyed the seared black cod, which was served with beluga lentils and pomegranate juice. The Pinot Noir braised lamb shank was tender and delicious. For dessert the tiramisu parfait is rich and creamy, served with a warm chocolate brownie and salted caramel ice cream.
Aureole Las Vegas is located at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The three-course prix fixe menu is $79. The full menu is available a la carte in the lounge and bar area. If you want to search through Aureole’s eWinebook ahead of time you can browse it online.